From: Femi Oyelola, kaduna
A chartered Accountant, Friday Agbo has argued that crude oil hindered Nigeria’s development because it made leaders not accountable.
He made the assertion during a one-day training organized by Alter Consult in conjunction with KADPOLY Consult in kaduna yesterday.
According to him, ”if the economy was tax driven, no one will allow his or her tax paid to be embezzled. But oil money is taken and because people didn’t work for it, they are not really bothered”.
Agbo added that VAT law should be channeled into where it is generated from, not just the head office of corporate organisations or multinationals; “For instance, Zenith Bank head office is in Lagos and any VAT generated, even from here in Kaduna, goes to its head office in Lagos,” he said.
He lamented that Nigeria is one of the lowest, if not lowest VAT rated countries.
“In Nigeria, revenue generated through VAT is about 5%”.
Second discussant, Dr. John Aliu (Director CBMS, KadPoly) said that the paper presented was very thorough but needs to go a bit further in telling how funds can be utilized.
“I didn’t see anywhere in the paper, where the issue of attitude was discussed and our major problem in Nigeria is attitudinal.
“Why are we still where we are. Nigerians pursue success by the yards, instead of by the inch. If you can walk five kilometres in a day, you can get to Zaria in five days. But Nigerians want success by the yards and would want to get to Zaria in a day, thereby collapsing along the way and not reaching the destination,” he explained.
Speaking further, he was unhappy that most Nigerians do not keep a positive mindset for progress.
“We have stopped picturing ourselves as winning and seeing ourselves as people who can’t win. My message of hope is that we should change our attitudes and picture ourselves as winners,” he advised.
The training titled ‘An Alternative Model On Restructuring Taxation, A Tool For Economic Diversity and Good Governance’,saw key Experts in the financial industry and Tax experts presenting papers on the needs for restructuring of Taxation in the country.